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How to see the Draconid meteor shower from South Africa in 2022

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How to see the Draconid meteor shower from South Africa in 2022

(CTN News) – This weekend, the Draconid Meteor Shower will peak, but only stargazers from the northern hemisphere will be able to witness this celestial event. If you are viewing from South Africa, do not worry!

Below you will find live streams of the meteor shower. Here is what you need to know about the Draconids.

Draconid meteor shower

When to watch

Draconid meteor showers typically occur during the first two weeks of October. In this year’s calendar, it peaks on October 8 and 9.

Stargazers may observe ten Draconid meteors per hour under ideal conditions – such as a dark sky without a moon or light pollution.

Unfortunately, October’s Hunter Moon on Sunday will likely obscure most Draconid meteors in the northern hemisphere.

What are the Draconids?

Michel Giacobini discovered the Draconids on 20 December 1900 from dust grains ejected from Comet 21P Giacobini-Zinner.

“These small dust grains are distributed along the comet’s orbit, concentrating close to the comet’s nucleus, according to the South Africa Bronberg Weather Station.”

Draconid meteor showers occur whenever the Earth passes through this stream of dust particles (i.e. meteor stream).

Comet 21P Giacobini-Zinner

Tonight, the Earth will pass through the center of the comet’s dust trail.

The comet 21P Giacobini-Zinner passes Earth every 6.6 years, and last reached perihelion on 10 September 2018, when it was closest to the sun in our solar system.

That was also the year the comet made its closest approach to Earth.

Will the dragon awake in 2022?

The Draconid meteor shower has been described as a “real oddity” by Secrets of Space, a non-profit organization in the United States.

During the hours of darkness, the radiant point is at its highest point. As a result, unlike many meteor showers, the Draconids are more likely to occur in the evening hours than in the morning hours following midnight.

The Centre warns “watch out if the Dragon awakens” even if some years may see an uneventful shower.

Draco has been known to spew forth hundreds of meteors within an hour on rare occasions

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